Please read all of this before responding. You will not be helping when you show a clear misunderstanding of my question.
I do not need a data plan. Everywhere I go has Wi-Fi, and I am perfectly content to not have internet connectivity in the event that I don't have Wi-Fi. What I want to know is if I can buy a phone from a store (not from Verizon or a contract renewal) and replace my current phone with it without needing a data plan. There is NO software/hardware reason why I couldn't, and the only reason I would need to is as a Verizon requirement.
As an additional question, if Verizon doesn't allow it, is there any workaround?
I want an android phone not to have ubiquitous connection to social media. I want an android phone to have platform to run software on in addition to making/receiving calls and text messages. I would not utilize a data plan and it would be a waste of money.
Can I use an Android phone that I buy from a retailer on my Verizon plan without adding data? There's no hardware or software reason why I need a data plan, and there IS a point to having a smart phone without a data plan: Wi-Fi. I don't need to have redundant internet access. The only reason conceivable for why I'd need a data plan is because Verizon wants more money for no additional service (I wouldn't USE connectivity provided by a data plan). I don't want to have a mobile platform for running software and a phone filling my pockets, I'd like it to be in one. All the connectivity I need is for calls and text messaging.
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Solved! Go to Correct Answer
Yes, but I don't go to a car insurance person with a new car with features that are better than an other one, and have them charge me for features I won't use.
The car analogy is bad. Don't use it.
The point is, I want to be able to use a smartphone I buy. I'm not buying it from Verizon, that's stupid. I'm buying it from the phone market, but unfortunately the service market is over-saturated by people who don't know how to shop for phones, so Verizon knows they can get away with charging extra for service that's barely used when everyone has wifi, what they lose from smart people who don't want to throw money away they more than make up for in sheep that don't know what they are doing.
The bottom line: why should a data package be required when the phone will /never/ use it, EVER? Because Verizon can get away with it.
After reading your "entire" post, I think I "understand" you want to activate an Android phone on the Verizon network without having to add a data plan to your line. The answer is NO, you cannot activate an Android phone on the Verizon network without having a data plan active on the line.
I can't imagine how there would be any workarounds as Verizon would be aware you are a customer and Verizon can tell by the device ID # that it is a smartphone. When it was noticed a data plan was not active, one would be added.
What you're describing sounds like a perfectly reasonable way to use the technology, but at this stage I doubt if it's possible. (I don't know what got deleted from the message by the moderator, but what's left sounds totally rational.) Perhaps some enterprising small phone company will start offering talk-and-text-only plans for smartphones, but it ain't gonna be Verizon. There might actually be a fair-sized market for it, but there's no way one of the major carriers is going to cut itself out of the data deal.
T-Mobile allows the use of a smartphone without a data plan, if the customer pays full price for the smartphone or brings it from somewhere else.
And to the original poster no, on Verizon Wireless you have to have a data plan on a smartphone that is in use.
You say you want to run 'software' on your Android phone and not have a data plan. If you plan to use software that comes installed on the phone, you probably don't need a data plan. But, if you need to download the software you want to use, you must have a data plan to do that.
But, as another responder said, the bottom line is you can't use a smart phone on the VZW network without a data plan.
But, if you need to download the software you want to use, you must have a data plan to do that.
Not if you download via WiFi. The bottom line is Verizon will not allow a smartphone to activate on their network without a data plan.
I stand corrected!
Here's an article on the subject with a good discussion and a somewhat dodgy suggestion for non-Verizon service: http://news.cnet.com/8301-1035_3-57555091-94/can-you-ditch-your-smartphone-data-plan-for-wi-fi/.
Here's a discussion on a T-Mobile forum laying out the options (as of last November): http://support.t-mobile.com/message/198200. It sounds like it would meet one of the OP's desires: "Can I use an Android phone that I buy from a retailer on my Verizon plan without adding data?" Not on Verizon, but probably on T-Mobile.
I had the exact same questions. After talking to 3 separate Verizon agents (only one had an answer I was satisfied with), I figured it is not possible with an Android phone. There are some 'basic phones' that you can get a 'pay as you go' data plan, but those aren't the phone that you are interested in.
The smartphone itself doesn't require a data plan, but Verizon requires it. From what I understand, they don't really make that much money on voice or text anymore. Data plans are helping them get their big bucks, and I can't blame them for charging. It's all business.
To answer your question on using an android phone on Verizon without a required data add-ons. Verizon's system detects when a phone is activated by checking the MEID (Serial Number) of the device and putting the required features needed for that phone. In your case a data plan will be needed in order to successfully use the phone on Verizons Network. Reps have no way of overriding or removing the feature codes for the device from the system. Might I suggest getting the lowest data plan currently offered.